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To Kill a Sultan

A Transnational History of the Attempt on Abdülhamid II (1905)

Editors: Alloul, Houssine, Eldem, Edhem, de Smaele, Henk (Eds.)

  • Sheds light on a less well known episode in the history of Ottoman–European relations at the turn of the twentieth century
  • Explores the ‘entangled’ history of interstate dealings, nationalist and revolutionary movements, and various other international actors
  • Reinvigorates the field of international history, while also contributing to areas such as the history of radicalization, terrorism, and humanitarianism
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Buy this book

eBook $79.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-48932-6
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $99.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-137-48931-9
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This book explores an event described by the Times as 'one of the greatest and most sensational political conspiracies of modern times'. On 21 July 1905, just after the Friday Prayer at the Yıldız Hamidiye Mosque in Istanbul, a car bomb exploded and left 26 dead with another 58 wounded. Sultan Abdülhamid II, the target of the attack, remained unscathed. The Ottoman police soon discovered that Armenian revolutionaries were behind the plot and several people were arrested and convicted, among them the Belgian anarchist Edward Joris. His incarceration sparked international reaction and created a diplomatic conflict. The assassination attempt failed, the events faded from memory, and the plot became a footnote in early twentieth-century history. This book rediscovers the conspiracy as a transnational moment in late Ottoman history, opening a window on key themes in modern history, such as international law, terrorism, Orientalism, diplomacy, anarchism, imperialism, nationalism, mass media and humanitarianism. It provides an original look on the many trans- and international links between the Ottoman Empire, Europe and the rest of the world at the start of the twentieth century.

About the authors

Houssine Alloul holds a PhD in history and is currently a Research Associate at the University of Antwerp, Belgium, where he is also a member of Power in History: Centre for Political History (PoHis). His doctoral dissertation investigated the relations between Belgium and the Ottoman Empire, with a special focus on the intertwining of small power diplomacy, the global expansion of Belgian capital, and interculturality. His research interests include consular history, Orientalism(s), travel literature, modern finance capitalism, and Leopoldian colonialism.

Edhem Eldem teaches history at Boğaziçi University, Istanbul, Turkey. He concentrates on nineteenth-century Ottoman social and cultural history, with particular emphasis on westernization and relations with Europe. Following publications on funerary epigraphy, trade, banking, urban development, and Orientalism, his current research focuses on archaeology, photography, visual culture, and first-person narratives.

Henk de Smaele teaches modern cultural history at the University of Antwerp, Belgium, where he is connected to the research unit Power in History: Centre for Political History (PoHis). His current research includes the modern history of gender and sexuality, as well as the history of relations between Europe and the Middle East.

Reviews

“This tightly focused collection of essays on the attempted assassination of Sultan Abdülhamid II in Istanbul in 1905 is the best argument I’ve seen in a long time for historical collaboration. A gripping story of a Flemish anarchist who participates as a member of an Armenian terrorist cell in the first car bombing, as told by this “collective of authors coordinated by a trio of editors,” the local history becomes global and the micro history all encompassing.” (Janet Polasky, Presidential Professor of History, University of New Hampshire, author of Revolutions Without Borders: The Call to Liberty in the Atlantic World)

“The attempted assassination of Abdülhamid II on 21 July 1905 seemed to be condemned to remain a minor footnote in the history of the 19th-century Ottoman Empire until the publication of this book. Drawing on a wide variety of sources, To Kill A Sultan stands as an outstanding example of micro history set in a world context. The work of nine international scholars, it brings together fascinating details about the actual planning of the attentat, that reads like a spy novel, combined with magisterial overviews that engage current debates about Orientalism, international law, and the nature of ‘revolutionary terror’.” (Selim Deringil, Professor of History, Lebanese American University, author of The Well-Protected Domains: Ideology and the Legitimation of Power in the Ottoman Empire, 1876-1909)

Table of contents (9 chapters)

  • Introduction

    Alloul, Houssine (et al.)

    Pages 1-33

  • The Armenian Revolutionary Federation and Operation ‘Nejuik’

    Minassian, Gaïdz

    Pages 35-65

  • Edward Joris: Caught Between Continents and Ideologies?

    Ginderachter, Maarten

    Pages 67-97

  • The Ottoman War on ‘Anarchism’ and Revolutionary Violence

    Altıntaş, Toygun

    Pages 99-128

  • Belgium and the Hamidian Regime; or, the Antinomies of Small State Diplomacy

    Alloul, Houssine

    Pages 129-161

Buy this book

eBook $79.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-48932-6
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $99.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-137-48931-9
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
To Kill a Sultan
Book Subtitle
A Transnational History of the Attempt on Abdülhamid II (1905)
Editors
  • Houssine Alloul
  • Edhem Eldem
  • Henk de Smaele
Copyright
2018
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-1-137-48932-6
DOI
10.1057/978-1-137-48932-6
Hardcover ISBN
978-1-137-48931-9
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIII, 281
Number of Illustrations
8 b/w illustrations
Topics